A winery and accommodation business in Victoria’s Macedon Ranges has hit the market just as the Victorian government moves to loosen COVID-19-related restrictions for regional areas and the sector gears up for a bumper year of domestic tourism.
The Cleveland Winery has been operating in its current format as a cellar door winery, events centre and accommodation business for the past 20 years.
The 40.3-hectare property, which includes working vineyards, consists of 50 guest rooms spread across multiple buildings, including a heritage-listed homestead that accommodates up to 12 guests.
Located in the historic township of Lancefield about an hour north of Melbourne, the property is offered as a freehold going concern and on the market through an expressions of interest campaign being conducted by JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group.
Listing agent Will Connolly, who declined to provide a price guide, said it was being brought to market for reasons unrelated to the COVID-19 pandemic.
But he said the sale was well-timed for a new owner to capitalise on increased domestic tourist demand arising from the ban on international travel.
A new owner, who would be likely taking possession of the property in the new year, would be well positioned to tap into what is expected to be a booming domestic tourism market.
“With regional Victoria now entering into the ‘third step’ of the COVID-19 roadmap, we’re incredibly excited to present such an extraordinary property which is now perfectly placed for an incoming operator to secure the asset and ultimately commence their tenure in the new year,” Mr Connolly said.
By that stage the whole of Victoria should be out of the current COVID-19-related restrictions, Mr Connolly predicted, adding that prospective buyers would be taking the long view beyond 2020.
“We’re going to see a huge influx of intrastate travel [in 2021],” he said.
Fellow listing agent Nick MacFie said tourist demand would be for destinations within an easy driving distance of Melbourne.
“[There will be] an increase in demand for ‘drive to’ leisure destinations as consumers continue to safely avoid the health risks associated with other modes of transport.”
A new operator could refurbish the property and pivot it toward the education market.
“You could also capitalise on enhancing the appeal of the venue to the wedding trade,” he said.
Mr Connolly said the loosening of restrictions meant that regional Victorian buyers would be able to inspect the property.
“We’re still pitching it further afield [despite restrictions],” he said.
Mr MacFie said the property could attract owner-occupiers and investors.
“This spectacular property provides the immediate benefit of full operational control or the opportunity for growth through rebranding or repositioning,” he said.